Casa di Beppina, our home in Prota, is a place where you can enjoy all the comforts of a completely renovated, modern home in a beautiful stone village house built in the 1600's.
You can have lunch or dinner at Ristorante Federici, an excellent family restaurant in the village, or just enjoy a romantic glass of wine on the terrace of Casa di Beppina, taking in the view of the Cerreto ski area past the lush, wooded hills that border the Taverone River Valley.
Prota is a hiker's paradise with many marked hiking trails in the area. It's an excellent place to look at wildflowers, birds and other wildlife. And along the way you can sample some of the wild berries that grow in abundance.
If you like the beach, a short 30-minute drive takes you to the lovely beach town of Lerici where you can cool off with a swim in the Ligurian Sea after basking in the sun. Or drive another 30 minutes and explore the five quaint villages of the Cinqueterre along the rocky coastline past the Gulf of the Poets.
If you prefer to explore off the beaten track where you are unlikely to see other tourists, the Lunigiana region has numerous small hill towns that are interesting to explore. Find your own favorite bar or restaurant. My favorite place for a cappuccino is in the village of Filattiera, but many other places run a close second.
With Casa di Beppina as your home base you can take day trips to Pisa, Lucca or Florence to explore artistic treasures of these historic towns. Lucca or Pisa are about an hour's drive and Florence is 2 hours away.
But most of all, Casa di Beppina is a place to relax away from the cares of the world. You will be welcomed by the warm, accepting residents whose families have lived here for generations. Or you might strike up a conversation with a professor from the University of Bologna, a world-famous author of children's books, a retired sea captain or one of the other interesting people who make Prota their home for part of the year.
Keywords: Village house, Medieval Village, Renovated farm house,
We are a family of travelers. We have traveled on 6 continents, and still travel whenever we can. Our primary home is near Seattle, but the place we really love to be is in our home in Prota.
We have both moved beyond our previous occupations of oceanography and law to become health coaches, helping people with weight-related health issues lose their weight and then develop habits that lead to optimal health.
Whenever we travel to Italy our dog always travels with us. Whenever her university schedule permits, our daughter does as well. They both love Prota.
We fell in love with this part of Italy in 1983 when we were working at a marine laboratory near Lerici. Over the years we kept coming back to visit until finally in 2007 we purchased our own home in Prota.
We bought it because it was close to Lerici, a wonderful beach town that we still love. We have been surprised by how much we prefer to stay in the little hill village and avoid the tourist bustle of the beach. But it's still nice to know it's there if you need your beach fix.
The primary benefit of staying at Casa di Beppino is the opportunity to be a part of Italian small village life, if only for a while. The people are delightful and giving far beyond what most of us experience at home.
Prota is nicely situated to permit explorations of Italian culture from the rustic to the most sophisticated. The cultural centers of Florence, Parma, Pisa, Lucca and Genova are all 1 to 2 hours away. The beach towns of Lerici, Viareggio, Forte dei Marmi and the Cinqueterre are all 30 minutes to an hour away.
A multitude of quaint hill towns are close enough to explore easily in a half a day.
Just outside you door are hiking trails to explore the nature preserve. Or like us you may want to walk your dog down the hill to Galletti's in Crespiano, have a cappuccino and read the newspaper (or at least look at the pictures) before taking the old trail back up the hill.